Friday, March 20, 2015

3/20: Roberto Enters HOF, Crawfords Broken Up, Happy B-Day Walter Schmidt & Blas Minor

  • 1887 - C Walter Schmidt was born in London, Arizona. He donned the tools of ignorance for Pittsburgh from 1916-24, hitting .257. Schmidt went through the unusual transaction of buying his own release from the San Francisco Seals after the 1915 season for $3K and negotiated a deal with the Bucs. He went that route because he suspected that the Seals had turned down previous offers for him made by MLB clubs and didn't want to miss the boat to the show. 
Walter Schmidt 1923 (photo Bain News Service via the Library of Congress)
  • 1937 - The Homestead Grays acquired future Hall of Famers Josh Gibson and Judy Johnson for $2,500 in cash and a pair of journeymen players after Pittsburgh Crawfords owner Gus Greenlee was forced to unload his stars as salary dumps. By the end of 1938, the Crawford’s Greenlee's field was razed to give way to the Bedford Dwellings housing project, and Greenlee sold the Crawfords to Toledo businessmen, leaving the Grays as the only black team in town. 
  • 1966 - RHP Blas Minor was born in Merced, California. Working out of the Buc bullpen from 1992-94, he had an 8-7-3 record for Pittsburgh with a 4.76 ERA. Minor also pitched for the Houston Astros, New York Mets & Seattle Mariners, and got to live out every boy’s childhood fantasy - after being a major league ballplayer, he retired to become a fireman.
Blas Minor 1994 Pacific Crown series

  • 1973 - In a special election held by the BBWAA‚ Roberto Clemente was voted into the Hall of Fame. The Board of Directors waived the five year eligibility period for Clemente, and he was inducted on August 6th as the first Hispanic player to enter Cooperstown. Roberto was a Latino trailblazer. Not only was he a hero in the Latin countries, but he was the first Latin American/Caribbean player to win a World Series as a starter (1960), receive a National League MVP Award (1966), and receive a World Series MVP Award (1971).
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